A demonstration ban from the Ministry of Interior, a sealed off Freedom Park and the equation of important riot police forces, few workers and a fair amount of observers or journalists (at times larger than the number of workers) showing up at Freedom Park resulted in an informal demonstration/meeting/gathering/protest in the garden adjacent to the park. Many opposition figures, ranging from opposition CNRP co-presidents Kem Sokha and Sam Rainsy, to Mam Sonando, Rong Chhun, Ty Savanntha and several others showed up, spoke a few words in the bullhorn and left.
A simultaneous attempt by land rights activists from Borei Keila and Boeung Kak lake, joined by monks from the Independent Monk Network for Social Justice (IMNSJ) attempted to march and deliver a petition to the Ministry of Women’s Affairs -this after all IS International Women’s Day- was thwarted by truckloads of riot police who prevented the group from reaching Monivong boulevard.
Peace prevailed. But the demonstration ban returned…
Louis Aragon: “Women are the future of men”…
That’s maybe why, in Cambodia, men shut them up, lock them up, beat them up…
Hopefully, and unlike in these photographs, Cambodian women will enjoy a peaceful day tomorrow for International Women’s Day…
Honouring the Cambodian women who struggle to be heard…
Sam Rainsy and Kem Sokha, CNRP co-presidents, presided over a workshop with various members of civil society about the elections reform. CPP members were invited but declined the offer.
According to a research by Harvard and Sydney universities reported upon by an article in the Cambodia Daily, Cambodia’s 2013 election ranks ‘as the fifth most “flawed or failed” out of the 73 national ballots held around the world between July 2012 and December 2013′.
(Always a challenge to bring back some sort of picture from visually boring situations.)
In a remake of ‘You Couldn’t And Now You Can‘, the three women who were arrested yesterday and released later in the day, came back in front of City Hall to request a meeting with officials regarding a retroactive compensation for the land they lost at Boeung Kak lake. This time no arrests were made and the women were let inside to explain their point of view. So exactly what was the point of the arrests yesterday?
Three women from Boeung Kak lake were arrested by municipal guards and thrown into a truck while they were waiting for the bulk of their community members to show up and deliver an invitation to attend a ceremony on Women’s Day to the city governor. An attempt later on to deliver the invitation to the Daun Penh police station was successfull but unsuccessfull at the CPP headquarters.
The three women will likely be released later in the day.
Little by little, a vast majority of the ‘hard’ land titles are being handed over to their owner, with land management clerks painstakingly checking and sifting through huge piles of documents. There are about 7 million land plots to be allocated to their rightfull owner… Fortunately for them. They now have some sort of security. This administrative effort unfortunately cannot hide the fact that evictions and land grabbings do still take place.
CORRECTION: The number of land plots is between 10 and 12 million (thank you Michael Hayes).
This is a follow-up post on the ‘Quest for Land‘ story which is available as an iApp on iTunes and which reports on land issues in Cambodia since the year 2000 with texts by Robert Carmichael and over 700 photographs.
In a clear gesture of support to the opposition CNRP, Mrs. Lida, a French Khmer, donated, via media-savvy and human rights activist monk Luon Sovath, money and rice collected among the Khmer community in France to a whole series of families hit by the current political situation at Wat Samaky Rasmey this morning.
Choreographer Manou Phuon continues her investigation on how to use khmer boxer’s moves into a contemporary dance narrative with the dancers from Amrita Performing Arts. Particularly flattering as she got the kick to do it after seeing the photographs I took about Khmer boxing (see HERE). Those pictures were bundled in a small book, entirely produced in Cambodia, back in 2005.